The foot is one of the most important structures when it comes to keeping runners healthy. What happens at the ankle and below can influence many factors higher up, including the knees, hips and lower back. A common mistake that many runners make is in choosing a shoe based on its looks rather than whether it works for their foot type. Additionally, shoes are often used long after they are worn out.
Shoes generally fall into 3 categories, with neutral/cushioned shoes working best for those with very inflexible and stiff feet, stability shoes designed for those with flatter and more mobile feet, and motion control shoes for only the flattest of feet. The supportive material in the shoe is designed to last between 300 to 500 miles and can lead to subtle overuse injuries once it no longer does its job. Custom orthotics can be very beneficial to those with chronic running related injuries as they are built specifically around a runner’s individual foot type and movement style to provide support and cushion during the running stride. While minimalist running has seen a lot of attention, with barefoot and other lower profiled shoes becoming very popular, it is more important to have a shoe that works specifically for you and with your body.
The information presented is offered only as something to consider in your quest for health and well-being. Always consult your healthcare provider before making any lifestyle changes.